Ever since my walk out west, I've been using cimarron as an online name. It's an Apache word, meaning "wanderer," a synonym for pilgrim. But it also has another interesting usage. When the Spanish moved into the Apache territory in western North America, and took it over, they adopted the word cimarron. But the Spanish meaning of the word is "wild." It was used to describe a native Apache who had been "civilized" (enslaved and domesticated by the Spanish) who then escaped and returned to his "wild" (native) ways. I like that image.

I was thinking about wildness yesterday, as a storm front moved in. It's been a concern of mine recently. It may have something to do with my series of reflections on aggression last week; I remember writing, "I don't want to be domesticated."

There's my approaching marriage, but I don't think there's much danger of domestication with Heather, a fiery spirit herself. My attention is drawn more towards the workings of organized community. Especially communities that are intentionally anti-violence, anti-aggression, and that are trying to be places of safety and healing. I think these are basically good intentions, but trying to create such a communal sanctuary by human means—by human organization and group pressure—can really put a damper on the fiery spirit. By constructing external social restraints (rules and authority structures) and also planting internal emotional restraints (taboos and shame) against our wilder, less controllable tendencies. These can produce some desirable social effects. But it's still the attempt to produce security for ourselves through our own efforts, isn't it?

And how does that put us in relation to the Spirit who "blows where it will", the God who is a "consuming fire"?

I believe this will be an important concern for me as I try to find my purpose here. Our wildness is a gift of God, the free expression of who he created us to be. We must not subdue it.